Using layers to create Luminosity selections has been a main feature in ADP LumiFlow Plugins for a number of years. Using layers has a couple of advantages over using calculations, which are also built into ADP LumiFlow. The main advantages to this method of mask creation are the layers, and how colour masks can be used.
By creating Luminosity with layers, you can adjust your mask with colour sliders. This gives you further control in selecting the areas you want to target. The advantage with colour masks with layers is we can make a final selection, then use the colour masks to see what effect they have on our selection. With other methods of mask creation, selecting a colour mask is done at a Lights 1 selection, then you modify the mask. In the layers method of mask creation it can be done at any time. It doesn’t end there, we have added in a few additional mask modification tools that have never been available before when working with layers.
When you are creating Luminosity Masks with Layers, they are 16-bit, as are all the methods of mask creation in the ADP LumiFlow Plugin.
We have added some incredible power and functionality into creating luminosity masks with layers. You’ll find many features you have not seen previously giving you a massive amount of control and not seen before in this method of mask creation.
To enter the Luminosity With Layers Plugin, access is from the main panel and is shown in red in the image to the left. There are two ways to enter the panel:
1. Making a selection in any of your zones: Darks, Lights, Midtones, Colour Masks, Restricted or Expanded zones will open the panel with your chosen mask.
2. Use the Tone Picker to select a Restricted zone directly from your image. This will then open the panel with your chosen tonal zone mask already selected for you.
In the top section of the panel you’ll find all of your mask selection buttons and colour masks. Also, included is the show and hide gradient giving you a visual of your selected zone.
Some incredible power and functionality has been added to the way you can modify and adjust your mask.
All the options for how you’d want to use your mask is available in this section, including the ability to use your mask as a black and white image.
The top section of the panel is where you create your initial luminosity selection. With any mask selection, there is an infinite ability to modify or adjust your mask, shown in the Adjust Your Mask section below. All luminosity selections are created with a feathered transition, allowing smooth adjustments. You can modify your mask to a harder selection through adjustments if you want to target specific objects.
This section will cover an initial selection, the next section will cover all of your adjustment options.
There are 5 darks masks available from 1 through to 5. A Darks 1 mask will select all your dark tones from the midtones through to the pure blacks. Each successive mask will cut your selection in half.
In reality, a Darks 1 mask is all that is required. You can then use the Levels Adjustment Layer created with your layers to restrict your mask to select any tonal range. So, you will not be restricted to using just the preset masks built into the panel. This will give you an infinite adjustment capability to create any mask you desire.
There are 5 lights masks available from 1 through to 5. A Lights 1 mask will select all your light tones from the midtones through to the pure whites. Each successive mask will cut your selection in half.
As with the Darks a Lights 1 mask is all that is required. You can then use the Levels Adjustment Layer created with your layers to restrict your mask to select any tonal range. So, you will not be restricted to using just the preset masks built into the panel. This will give you an infinite adjustment capability to create any mask you desire.
There are 4 Midtone masks available from 1 to 4. These masks make selection in the midtones of your image with midtones 1 being a very restrictive mask. This selects a very narrow range of tones in your midtones. With each successive midtone mask the selection increases. These are powerful masks for making contrast adjustments in your image.
The Restricted zone masks (1 to 11) work in a very similar method to midtone masks. These allow you to make restricted zone selections throughout all the tones in your image. This allows you to target specific tonal ranges without effecting other tones throughout your image. It is a powerful method to work within specific areas of your images.
You can use the tone picker on the main panel of the image and select a tone you want to work on directly from your image. This means you don’t have to scroll through the tones to find the right mask for your needs.
The Expanded zone masks (1 to 5) provide you with a much larger tonal zone than the Restricted zone masks. This will allow you to make larger adjustments from contrast to shifting the tonal zone, creating high or low key images.
The colour masks provide you with the ability to create masks with specific colour channels. These are based on the combination of Red, Green & Blue (RGB). Often, we can target our desired area by restricting our selection to a specific colour channel instead of all of them.
When you make a colour channel selection the title of this section will change to the colour you have chosen. Then modify your mask and get it targeting the area of interest and then use the colour channels. You may find one of the colour channels makes a stronger selection. Using colour channels in Quick Masks is available as well, but you need to start with a colour mask, then modify your mask. You cannot modify your mask then scroll through your colour masks like you can with layers.
The power and ability to adjust your mask has increased significantly. Creating Luminosity with layers has never had the ability to dodge and burn, or paint directly on the mask previously. We’ve also built in some automated adjustments, allowing you to fine tune your mask without having to go into the adjustment layers.
With each luminosity mask, you are given 4 adjustment layers, 3 green layers and one red. The green layers are available for adjustment, the red layer should be left alone.
The black & white Mask Creation layer allows you to modify your mask through colour adjustments. Take care to watch you mask closely if you are going to push these to extremes, that you’re not getting any artifacts on your mask.
This allows you to use a curves adjustment layer to modify the lightness and darkness of your mask. You can also use the tone picker in the curves adjustment to select and modify tones directly on your image.
The Levels Mask Creation layer allows you to modify the tonal range through three sliders. You can expand or restrict your tonal range with the midtone slider. Darken your blacks or darks in the image by sliding the darks slider. Lighten your whites or lights by sliding the whites slider. Create an infinite range of masks.
These buttons will restrict your mask by increments of 5 and 10%. You do not need to go into your adjustment layers to restrict the tonal range, you can use these adjustments buttons.
These buttons will expand your mask by increments of 5 & 10%. You do not need to go into your adjustment layers to expand the tonal range.
Darken your blacks in your masks in increments of 5 & 10% directly in the panel without using the adjustment layers.
Lighten the whites in your masks in increments of 5 & 10% directly in the panel without using the adjustment layers.
These tools are completely unique and not available previously in creating luminosity with layers. With each of these tools you will see an additional layer added to your layer stack. Each of these will be created with a black mask, you then use a white brush paint in the effect. You are also not limited to a single adjustment. For example, if you wanted to dodge twice or three times, you simply create another adjustment by pressing the button again.
Dodge: This will allow you to lighten the whites in your mask while having no effect on the blacks.
Burn: This will also you to darken the blacks in your mask while having no effect on the whites.
Fill White: You can paint white directly onto the mask.
Fill Black: You can paint black directly onto the mask.
Select a white or black paint brush.
Step backward and forward through your adjustments. Each click of a button on the panel is only one history state.
This will fill your screen with the image.
Zoom in and out of your image.
After you have completed selecting and modifying your mask in Luminosity With Layers there are many options for how you can use your mask in your image.
You can choose to use your mask on a dodge or burn layer. Firstly, select the type of Dodge & Burn layer you want to use then choose to Dodge or Burn:
You have 10 adjustment layer options including:
Brightness & Contrast, Levels, Curves, Exposure, Vibrance, Hue & Saturation, Selective Color, Solid Color, Photo Filter & Color Balance.
The mask you have created will automatically be applied to the mask of your adjustment layer.
One of the great new additions to ADP LumiFlow is the power in working with black and white images. This button will create an image layer in black and white based on your mask.
Another new addition is the ability to create a black and white image and retain all of the layers. This will allow you to do further non-destructive adjustments to the black and white image.